Forward Brady Tkachuk (6-foot-3, 196 pounds), a top prospect for the 2018 NHL Draft, had 54 points (25 goals, 29 assists) in 61 games for USA Hockey's National Team Development Program under-18 team last season, and also helped the United States win the gold medal at the 2017 IIHF World Under-18 Championship. He's the son of United States Hockey Hall of Fame member Keith Tkachuk and the younger brother of Calgary Flames forward Matthew Tkachuk. Brady has offered to maintain a draft diary for NHL.com, leading up to the NHL Draft in Dallas on June 22-23. In his second entry, he talks about the start to his freshman season at Boston University. In two games he has one assist and a team-high 12 shots on goal.
Hello hockey fans.
I've really been enjoying my freshman year at Boston University. My roommate is also my linemate, Shane Bowers. I love the campus and playing for the Terriers. Our first game was at home against Union and it was great to see all the other students there. It was packed and it was an awesome atmosphere, a great game to be a part of. We won the game 4-1, so the outcome was great too. For our second game we traveled to Quinnipiac and that was a cool atmosphere too. Being in enemy territory was a lot of fun, especially because won 3-2 in overtime.
We definitely work a lot both on and off the ice. Off the ice we work with assistant coach Len Quesnelle and assistant strength and conditioning coach Kyle Czech. They like to work with us on our explosiveness while wanting us to remain strong. On the ice, coach David Quinn really wants us to be well-conditioned while playing hockey and that's by doing a lot of skating drills, passing, shooting and design drills to get us moving and making plays at high speed.
Coach Quinn's biggest thing is playing fast and playing physical. If we're doing that, he knows we'll be successful. We need to work to win all the 1-on-1 battles on the ice.
My linemates so far have been Bowers and Patrick Harper and it's been a lot of fun. They've gotten off to a great start. My job as their linemate is getting the puck down low and trying to create space for them. I want to be physical and hard to play against so whenever I have the puck, I might take it to the net or make a play for a scoring chance. I try to win every battle and work my hardest every shift.
A majority of my shots have been right in front of the net, either from rebounds, point shots or just ones laying there. I pride myself on just being around the net and trying to get those second and third chances so I feel most of the opportunities I get are from rebounds.
Even though my brother, Matthew, is pretty busy with his schedule, we still keep in touch. He wants to know what I'm up to and I want to know how he's doing. He's really excited because the NHL season is just getting started and Calgary signed Jaromir Jagr. He's really excited about that and said he's learning a lot from him. It's great to hear things are going well and I know he'll continue to work hard.
My mom and dad arrived in Boston on Thursday for family weekend. We're scheduled to play Minnesota State at home on Friday and Saturday, so it'll be the first time my parents will see me in a Boston University jersey. That'll be a special feeling. It should be a fun atmosphere both nights so we're all really looking forward to it.
Until next month, thanks for reading everyone!